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Loss of Amtrak's Gunn Threatens Progress on Improving Intercity Travel Options

STPP joined with Reconnecting America on a joint statement expressing strong concern about a recent action by the Amtrak Board to fire Amtrak President and CEO David L. Gunn. “With the nation’s aviation system on a permanent glide path to serving fewer markets and intercity bus services shrinking almost daily, the Amtrak Board’s action just cost us the best railroad operator in the nation," said STPP President Anne Canby in a STPP-RA statement. To view the full statement, go to -- http://www.transact.org/library/release_doc/Final_RA_

SAFETEA-LU’s Positives Get Swamped in the Aftermath of Katrina

With enactment of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) in August, Congress and the Administration finally agreed on a multi-year renewal of the nation’s surface transportation law, which had previously expired September 30, 2003.

Congress had to enact a dozen extensions of the existing law, known as TEA-21, before SAFETEA-LU was signed in to law. In the end, the new legislation provided for substantial growth in highway, transit and safety funding over the TEA-21 law, totaling $286.5 billion over six fiscal years (FY’04-09). As a practical matter, the legislation is effectively a four-year law since nearly two full years of transportation spending was set in the numerous extensions of TEA-21.

To read more click here.

Statement of STPP President Anne P. Canby on Enactment of New Federal Transportation Law

-- It Is Now Up to State & Local Leaders to Deliver Real Travel Options to the Public 

August 10, 2005

For Information Contact: Surface Transportation Policy Project (STPP)
Anne Canby at 202/974-5135 or Kevin McCarty, 202/974-5138

As the President signs the transportation bill, the opportunity to make wiser use of these new transportation dollars now shifts to state and local leaders.

While a drill and drive formulation of our nation's energy and transportation challenges underpinned the Congressional  debate, the new law does continue to empower governors, state transportation agency officials and local officials to go  beyond business as usual in their transportation investment policies and priorities.

If there was ever a time for greater state leadership, it is now, with polls showing that gas prices cause hardship for a  majority of Americans, even before the most recent run up in oil prices. State leaders in partnership with local  officials can take advantage of the flexibility of federal funds to deliver real travel options to the public, reducing the  burden of rising transportation costs on families and regional economies and harm to the environment. This means  raising commitments to public transportation, walking and bicycling and doing a better job of maintaining and  operating systems already in place.

Much has changed since Congress initiated debate on the new transportation law more than three years ago. Energy  supplies are more uncertain, gasoline costs are much higher and rising, and there is a greater urgency to connect our  national energy, health, environmental and transportation policies. Despite some improvements in the safety area,  Congress largely ignored these broader issues, leaving state and local leaders to address them on their own. Adding  to the challenge, the huge increase in Congressional project earmarks reduces the resources that will be available to  state and local leaders to respond to these national issues.

It is now up to our governors, mayors, county executives and other elected officials to make better transportation  choices for transit, walking, bicycling, freight movement, and land use and development, mindful of these broader  national challenges. The STPP Coalition calls on state and local leaders to act decisively and fill this void.

The Surface Transportation Policy Project, a national non-profit advocacy organization founded in 1991, is a diverse,  nationwide coalition working to ensure safer communities and smarter transportation choices that enhance the  economy, improve public health, promote social equity, and protect the environment.

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STPP Statement on Congressional Approval of New Transportation Bill
Canby praises Congress for “Staying the Course” in its renewal agreement that largely preserves the ISTEA/TEA-21  framework. To view STPP statement, go to -- http://www.transact.org/library/release_doc/federal_transportation_bill.doc

Driven to Spend:
Pumping Dollars out of Our Households and Communities

A new study by the Surface Transportation Policy Project (STPP) and the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) shows that families are paying a high price to meet their transportation needs and families in areas with fewer transportation choices carry even greater burdens.

Click here for press release or report

STPP releases Mean Streets 2004

America’s streets are growing meaner for pedestrians.  This year, STPP is taking the opportunity with the publication of our fifth edition of Mean Streets to reflect on the trends in pedestrian safety over the past decade.

Click here to read more

For information on SAFETEA-LU visit FHWA.


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